What do the next few months hold for you? None of us knows for sure. We’ve been telling everyone, “have a happy new year,” or “all the best this year.” But don’t you wonder – and sometimes, worry – about what may happen?
It will always be that way, unfortunately! Because we can’t control the future.
Does our faith in God give us any security? Here are 5 verses I’m hanging onto through any up-or-down that will come my way. You nor I have to be hopeless when facing life’s challenges or worries.
1. I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. Philippians 1:6
You might look at the past year (or even further back) and say, “What’s so good about that!” Hurts and hatred aren’t easily erased from our memory or our hearts. But I’m hanging on to “the good work” which God has promised in that verse. It’s the work of God which I first believed by faith because of the salvation I received through Jesus Christ [Ephesians 2:8-10].
Bad stuff will still happen, but God knows how to use even those things. God doesn’t bring the bad, but even more important, God doesn’t waste any opportunity to work in your life for the good that only He can bring.
Salvation makes us His loved children [Romans 8], and God is a Father Who never abandons you to go through life alone [Matthew 28:20]. There will be times when you think your life is falling apart, but you can trust your Heavenly Father to “continue” with you every day of this new year … and every day beyond that, until He knows when all is “finished.”
That makes your year ahead safe in His Hands.
2. Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Just because God has promised His everlasting love to us doesn’t mean we should plow through life without prayer. That would make 2020 a dangerous year! I love the word “everything” in those verses. Do you trust yourself for everything? I sure don’t trust myself.
God cares about everything in your life. And He loves it when you pray about everything, because it shows that you and He are committed to this new year together. There’s no doubt. You and I will have plenty to pray about this year! Prayer brings peace because of the Person you pray to.
That makes Your year ahead hopeful!
3. Anyone who listens to My teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Matthew 7:24
Did you eat more than you should have over the holidays? Still working that off? I sure am.
Who can you or I blame for that? Those great cooks in our family and friend relationships? Have you looked in the mirror lately? That’s the person to blame. Sorry!
My point is this: No one forced you to eat all those goodies. And God won’t force you to “feed” on His Word. But look at what you will miss, if you don’t seek God in the Bible to help you in this new year. Invest some time every morning listening to God. It’s His Word and He will use it to build “rock solid” faith in you.
That will make you more confident in the year ahead.
4. So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. John 13:34
I don’t know if you’ve made any new year resolutions, but this is the one I know I need to work on more. Loving always … loving when it’s hard … loving because God first loved me. Every time I read 1 John, chapters 3 and 4, I am convicted to do better because I know it’s God’s good will.
I need to work on loving more this year. Say it more, show it more, prove it more. When you love the people around you, whether at home or work or “around,” you feel better … they feel better … God really feels good!
That will make your year ahead more meaningful.
5. Be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. 1 Corinthians 15:58
Wow, I started with work and ended with work. But life is work. God doesn’t want you to glide through 2020. People talk about new year resolutions because they have “resolved” to do something different or better.
It’s determination … discipline.
Want to know what my two worst months of the year? January and February at the gym. It’s not because I’m feeling guilty. But it’s all the people with Christmas memberships who are on my machines! We regulars are so glad when mid-February comes. Why? Many people who started strong at the new year have become strangers at the gym.
Don’t be like that in this new year ahead of you. When you start believing that everything you do is important to God’s good work in you, everything becomes important.
Make 2020 your most successful year ever.
You will look great to God and you will reap all the good benefits He has for you. That internal stuff is His greatest work that He has for you!
Pastor Dave is a happy guy. He is loved by his wife. He is loved by his kids. He is loved as PopPop by his grandkids. Best of all, He is loved by God!